From the ENS… Theology of Inclusion Empowers Ethnic Communities

November 6, 2006

  [Episcopal News Service]  The theology of inclusion in the Episcopal Church is drawing in ‘unchurched’ people from ethnic minorities who have historically been marginalized in American church and society, said the Rev. Dr. Fred Vergara, national missioner for Asian American Ministries of the Episcopal Church.

Speaking at a Book Forum at Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Virginia, October 23, Vergara said that many Episcopal dioceses in the country reported welcoming Asian communities receptive to the inclusive trends of the Episcopal Church.

“I think the message they are getting is that if the Church is capable of welcoming and empowering women, gays and lesbians as equal members of the Body of Christ, then it is capable of welcoming and empowering almost everybody,” Vergara said. “It is a radical form of hospitality that says, ‘you are accepted whoever and whatever you are and you don’t need to be like us.’ It is a closer approximation of God’s unconditional love.”

Read the rest of the story here.

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I had someone– an African-American– tell me the other day, that she was upset with the gay community because she thought we had ‘hijacked’ the message of Martin Luther King Jr., when the black community has not yet received the full benefit of it.

My hope is that we (and by we I mean the entire human family, especially the marginalized), instead of falling into the perils of playing into the establishment’s hierarchy of power, work to empower each other in love and compassion and tear down those walls and boundaries– that we re-write the societal urge that tells us there needs to be a hierarchy within the human family where we are all created in God’s image, different as we may be and equal as we are.

I think this article is a great testament to that.

j

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